96 Badass Simone De Beauvoir Quotes That Will Inspire You
The 'Mother of Modern Feminism', Simone de Beauvoir was an extraordinary intellectual, French writer, political activists and social theorist. Her life exemplified the emergence of female-centric revolutionary ideas and struggle for social structure free from patriarchal ideas. She laid down a political roadmap for reinvention and polarization of the society. Being extremely intelligent for her age, Simone completed her graduation at the delicate age of 17 and earned her advanced degree when she was just 19. She was the youngest person to achieve an aggregation in philosophy who scored second highest marks in this test. Simone, the 'lady of letters' wrote on popularized social taboos like politics, morality, gender theory, sexuality, philosophy, literary criticism and existentialism. Along with her partner Jean-Paul Sarte, this legendary intellectual wrote several novels, memoirs, magazines and columns. Before her death, she had produced countless essays and 20 ground-breaking books. Her best works include
'The Second Sex', 'She Came to Say' and 'The Ethics of Ambiguity'. Simone's autography 'The Mandarins' that beautifully captures her life struggles brought her France's highest literary Honor. Throughout her life, de Beauvoir lived a controversial but star-like life, meeting foreign dignitaries and getting followed by the paparazzi. A headstrong person with clear-cut ideologies, Simone is an inspiration for modern-day women. Her thoughts and quotes reflect her intellectualism. We have gathered together Simone de Beauvoir's most thought-provoking quotes. Presenting a collection of Simone de Beauvoir's quotes excerpted from her work and life.
She was ready to deny the existence of space and time rather than admit that love might not be eternal. I am incapable of conceiving infinity, and yet I do not accept finity. I want this adventure that is the context of my life to go on without end. I am too intelligent, too demanding, and too resourceful for anyone to be able to take charge of me entirely. No one knows me or loves me completely. I have only myself One's life has value so long as one attributes value to the life of others. One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman. When I was a child, when I was an adolescent, books saved me from despair: that convinced me that culture was the highest of values[...]. In itself, homosexuality is as limiting as heterosexuality: the ideal should be to be capable of loving a woman or a man; either, a human being, without feeling fear, restraint, or obligation. That's what I consider true generosity: You give your all, and yet you always feel as if it costs you nothing. A man attaches himself to woman -- not to enjoy her, but to enjoy himself. One's life has value so long as one attributes value to the life of others, by means of love, friendship, and compassion To lose confidence in one’s body is to lose confidence in oneself. What an odd thing a diary is: the things you omit are more important than those you put in. Man is defined as a human being and a woman as a female — whenever she behaves as a human being she is said to imitate the male. I tore myself away from the safe comfort of certainties through my love for truth - and truth rewarded me. If you live long enough, you'll see that every victory turns into a defeat. Few tasks are more like the torture of Sisyphus than housework, with its endless repetition: the clean becomes soiled, the soiled is made clean, over and over, day after day. All oppression creates a state of war. And this is no exception. The body is not a thing, it is a situation: it is our grasp on the world and our sketch of our project No one is more arrogant toward women, more aggressive or scornful, than the man who is anxious about his virility. I was made for another planet altogether. I mistook the way. I wish that every human life might be pure transparent freedom. Two separate beings, in different circumstances, face to face in freedom and seeking justification of their existence through one another, will always live an adventure full of risk and promise." (p. 248) Representation of the world, like the world itself, is the work of men; they describe it from their own point of view, which they confuse with absolute truth. She would never change, but one day at the touch of a fingertip she would fall to dust. Capabilities are clearly manifested only when they have been realized. It is in the knowledge of the genuine conditions of our lives that we must draw our strength to live and our reasons for living. Change your life today. Don't gamble on the future, act now, without delay. Sex pleasure in women is a kind of magic spell; it demands complete abandon; if words or movements oppose the magic of caresses, the spell is broken. Fathers never have exactly the daughters they want because they invent a notion a them that the daughters have to conform to. If the feminine issue is so absurd, is because the male's arrogance made it "a discussion What would Prince Charming have for occupation if he had not to awaken the Sleeping beauty? To catch a husband is an art; to hold him is a job. Because we are separated everything separates us, even our efforts to join each other. ...her wings are cut and then she is blamed for not knowing how to fly. There is something in the New York air that makes sleep useless. I could see no reason for being sad. Itīs just that it makes me unhappy not to feel happy. Women's mutual understanding comes from the fact that they identify themselves with each other; but for the same reason each is against the others. Be loved, be admired, be necessary; be somebody. Why one man rather than another? It was odd. You find yourself involved with a fellow for life just because he was the one that you met when you were nineteen. Some things I loved have vanished. A great many others have been given to me The point is not for women simply to take power out of men’s hands, since that wouldn’t change anything about the world. It’s a question precisely of destroying that notion of power. Today, however, we are having a hard time living because we are so bent on outwitting death. Even if one is neither vain nor self-obsessed, it is so extraordinary to be oneself - exactly oneself and no one else - and so unique, that it seems natural that one should also be unique for someone else. The word love has by no means the same sense for both sexes, and this is one cause of the serious misunderstandings that divide them. A day in which I don't write leaves a taste of ashes. People seem to think that if you keep your head empty you automatically fill your balls. One is not born a genius, one becomes a genius; and the feminine situation has up to the present rendered this becoming practically impossible. To abstain from politics is in itself a political attitude. Tragedies are all right for a while: you are concerned, you are curious, you feel good. And then it gets repetitive, it doesn't advance, it grows dreadfully boring: it is so very boring, even for me. Self-consciousness is not knowledge but a story one tells about oneself. And without a doubt it is more comfortable to endure blind bondage than to work for one's liberation; the dead, too, are better suited to the earth than the living. …but all day long I would be training myself to think, to understand, to criticize, to know myself; I was seeking for the absolute truth: this preoccupation did not exactly encourage polite conversation. Oppression tries to defend itself by its utility. ...counselling man to treat her as a slave while persuading her that she is a queen. Youth and what the Italians so prettily call stamina. The vigor, the fire, that enables you to love and create. When you've lost that, you've lost everything. To be oneself, simply oneself, is so amazing and utterly unique an experience that it's hard to convince oneself so singular a thing happens to everybody. What is an adult? A child blown up by age. You have never had any confidence in him. And if he has no confidence in himself it is because he sees himself through your eyes. All success cloaks a surrender I realized that even if we went on talking till Judgment Day, I would still find the time all too short. But women do not say 'We', except at some congress of feminists or similar formal demonstration; men say 'women', and women use the same word in referring to themselves. The body is the instrument of our hold on the world. Life is occupied in both perpetuating itself and in surpassing itself; if all it does is maintain itself, then living is only not dying. He formed his sentences hesitantly and then threw them at me with such force that I felt as if I were receiving a present each time There is only one solution if old age is not to be an absurd parody of our former life, and that is to go on pursuing ends that give our existence a meaning. It is not in giving life but in risking life that man is raised above the animal; that is why superiority has been accorded in humanity no to the sex that brings forth but to that which kills. Weakness' is weakness only in light of the aims man sets for himself, the instruments at his disposal and the laws he imposes. She was not to look beyond herself for the meaning of her life. I was very fond of Lagneau’s phrase: “I have no comfort but in my absolute despair. I think that where you go wrong is that you imagine that your reasons for living ought to fall on you, ready-made from heaven, whereas we have to find them for ourselves. It is so tiring to hate someone you love. The way I approached a question, my habit of mind, the way I looked at things, what I took for granted - all this was myself and it did not seem to me that I could alter it. The whole world was nothing but an exile with no hope of a return. A couple who go on living together merely because that was how they began, without any other reason: was that what we were turning into? To will oneself moral and to will oneself free are one and the same decision. The misfortune is that although everyone must come to [death], each experiences the adventure in solitude. We never left Maman during those last days... and yet we were profoundly separated from her. That the child is the supreme aim of woman is a statement having precisely the value of an advertising slogan. A man never begins by presenting himself as an individual of a certain sex; it goes without saying that he is a man. There is no justification for present existence other than its expansion into an indefinitely open future. He reflected. 'I know a lot of different kids of people; what I want is to show each of them how the others really are. You hear so many lies! Ready-made phrases and the ritual of etiquette were unknown to him; his thoughtfulness was pure improvisation, and it resembled the little inventions affection inspires. Legislators, priests, philosophers, writers, ans scientists have striven to show that the subordinate position of woman is willed in heaven and advantageous on earth. Every war, every revolution, demands the sacrifice of a generation, of a collectivity, by those who undertake it. The characteristic feature of all ethics is to consider human life as a game that can be won or lost and to teach man the means of winning. Self-knowledge is no guarantee of happiness, but it is on the side of happiness and can supply the courage to fight for it. I went to get a detective story. You have to kill time. But time will kill me too - and thereīs the true, preestablished balance. Man must not attempt to dispel the ambiguity of his being but, on the contrary, accept the task of realizing it.
I tried to love you less.I couldn't.
There was still a question in her eyes-- one that she did not like to put into words.
Every individual concerned to justify his existence feels that his existence involves an undefined need to transcend himself, to engage in freely chosen projects. pg. xxxiii
Mystery is never more than a mirage that vanishes as we draw near to look at it.
The truth is, however, that when two individuals detest each other, while being unable to get along without each other, it is not of all human relations the truest and most moving, but rather the most pitiable.
To paint, to write, to engage in politics—these are not merely ‘sublimations’; here we have aims that are willed for their own sakes. To deny it is to falsify all human history. Freedom is the source from which all significations and all values spring. It is the original condition of all justification of existence.